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Chestnut Leek Apple Parsley Stuffing

Gourmet Thanksgiving in Advance (described here) Recipe #6

You will never eat bagged stuffing again. The chestnuts are a tasty but pricey addition; the stuffing would still be delicious if you decide to leave them out.

Chestnut Leek Apple Parsley Stuffing

Adapted from Gourmet Magazine’s Chestnut, Leek, and Apple Stuffing

What I changed (reflected below) and why: Used a combination of white bread and whole wheat bagels since I had both around; Did not discard crust because that seemed like a waste (and who wants to de-crust a bagel?); Halved the butter since it seemed plenty; Did not peel apple for nutrition; Lessened chestnuts since 14-16oz appeared way too many; Substituted half-and-half for cream; Increased parsley for nutrition and for stronger flavor.

6 cups (1/2-inch) bread cubes (mixture of types is fine)
3 large leeks (white and pale green parts only), cut into 1-inch pieces (4 cups)
1/2 stick unsalted butter
2 celery ribs, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 teaspoon chopped thyme
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 cups bottled peeled roasted chestnuts (about 10 oz), halved
1 cup half-and-half
3/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

1. Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in upper and lower thirds. Bake bread cubes in a large 4-sided sheet pan in upper third of oven until dried slightly, about 15 minutes, then remove from oven. (Alternatively, leave out to dry at room temperature 8 to 24 hours.) Then increase oven temperature to 450°F.

2. Meanwhile, wash and chop leeks. Melt butter in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, then cook leeks and celery, covered, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add thyme, apples, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until apples are just tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and toss with bread, chestnuts, half-and-half, parsley, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Spread in a 2 1/2-to 3-quart shallow baking dish.

3. (Stuffing can be assembled, but not baked, 1 day ahead and chilled and covered. Bring to room temperature before baking.) Bake, uncovered, in lower third of oven until heated through and top is golden, about 30 minutes.

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One thought on “Chestnut Leek Apple Parsley Stuffing

  1. I’ve never had a chestnut stuffing and I’ve always wanted to try one. This looks delicious. Maybe I’ll have to try it with a roast chicken sometime after Thanksgiving.

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